What are dots and screeds?

Ask the pros-September, 2004
By Reggie Bullard


What are dots and screeds?
How do you get a wall straight with a string line?
dots and screeds Badly out of square wall is
straightened  using a string
line and dots and screeds.
Arrow shows finished thickness of the brown coat;
barely 3/4" on left and over 2" on the right.
You could see this all the way from the alley below.
String is set with a nail on the inside corner
(angle). Wood strip is set with a string
on the outside corner (arris).
dots and screeds
dots and screeds Here a wood block is used for a dot, and
taken off when the brown coat is finished.
There are probably a hundred ways to do this-pieces of cardboard, newspaper,
molding plaster or whatever.
What I am trying to do here is to establish
the wall thickness.
Dots are set less than 6 feet apart, because we are using a six foot rod
to set screeds, that  is fill in between the dots.
Area between wood blocks is filled and
rodded off. Here Carlos checks the screed
with a 6 foot rod.
It was hard to get a good shot with the shadows and scaffold in the way.
I hope you see what is going on.
dots and screeds
dots and screeds Wall is filled and rodded off between the
screeds. Heavy areas had to be filled in
a little at a time to avoid sagging. Having
a hot day really helped.
Wall is dead straight. View is from the
basement looking up. 
The pride of a good plasterer is getting the angle (inside corner) straight.
Click on the picture for a bigger view.

This is an overview
on dots and screeds and straightening
a wall. A whole chapter in my book will 
be dedicated to dots and screeds.


dots and screeds
dots and screeds Here a screed is set with a rod on this
interior plaster installation. 
A screed is set at the bottom horizontally and another five feet up. After the screeds tighten up, the area in between is filled and rodded
by holding the rod vertically.

These screeds are soft screeds, or are
filled in between the same day. Other screeds are allowed to set overnight.

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